Con Dem government signals shift from ‘Free Schools’ policy, back to BSF-esque programme.

Sarah Teather has in the Willesden and Brent Times pledged that schools will be able to reapply for a new school building with an announcement expected towards the end of the year.

Source: Guardian

The announcement signals a logical realisation that the Labour Party’s Building Schools for the Future programme was the correct route to follow with regards to Education policy. After a poor take up of schools going down the Teather and Gove ‘Free Schools’ route, the money that was there for the BSF scheme, as shown in this letter from Sarah Teather’s permanent secretary at the Education Department (LINK), which hasn’t been taken up by ‘free schools’, is available again for new school buildings.

In the meantime, the embarrassing U-turn dithering and realisation of this, will affect children in Brent now and in the immediate future.

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Have just been reading Sarah Teather’s take on the Building Schools for the Future Programme in the Willesden and Brent Times….

Whoa whoa whoa… let me get this right… Sarah Teather blames the poor state of our school buildings in Brent on the Labour Party’s Building Schools for the Future Scheme? A scheme that would have provided better school buildings and rapidly expanded the amount of children that we could accommodate in our schools.

Her logic totally defies all notions of the phrase common sense – a scheme that would’ve brought more school places to our children that was scrapped by her Government is to blame for the shortage for school places we face in Brent.

Yes, pure political point scoring from Brent Central MP whilst children in the Borough inevitably suffer. In addition, Teather has announced that there will be a new fund available that schools in Brent will be able to apply for, with an announcement due towards the end of the year. This signals a move back to Labour’s Building Schools for the Future programme. Except naturally, the Coalition Government will just call it something else so that they can take the credit for it as their own scheme.

In the meantime, the scale of the problem in our school buildings is highlighted by a recent incident at the Copland School where a light fell from the ceiling and hit a child. The delay in reverting back to Labour’s BSF programme is inevitably affecting children now.

In plain simplified terms, what the cuts in the Building Schools for the Future announcement means for the London Borough of Brent

Not Affected

  • The Ark Academy

Under Review

  • The Crest Boys Academy
  • The Crest Girls Academy

Stopped

  • Copland Community School
  • Queens Park Community School
  • Alperton Community School
  • Cardinal Hinsley